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Tulsa Mounts Second Half Comeback to Clip Shockers


WICHITA, Kan. ( –  Wichita State led by 11 at halftime and dominated in the paint, but it wasn’t enough to record a road win at Tulsa, falling 79-68 Wednesday night in the Donald W. Reynolds Center.


Wichita State (9-12, 1-7) played the first 20 minutes with momentum they created in the SMU win, but the final 20 minutes was a completely different story. Tulsa outscored the Shockers, 47-25, after halftime and closed the game on a 15-2 run over the final 3:54.

Five Shockers finished in double figures, led by Colby Rogers with 13. Harlond Beverly added 12 points, six rebounds and five assists but was just 6-for-17 from the floor. Dalen Ridgnal scored 11 of his points in the first half. Xavier Bell and Kenny Pohto both finished with 10 points apiece off the bench.

Wichita State was 5-for-12 from long range in the first half but went 1-for-9 in the second. Overall, Wichita State shot 46.2 percent. Tulsa was 11-for-27 (40.7 percent) from beyond the arc and attempted 21 more free throws, going 20-for-24 to Wichita State’s 2-for-3.

The Hurricane got 44 combined points from PJ Haggerty (23) and Cobe Williams (21). Haggerty came in ranked in the top 10 nationally in free throws made and attempted, and finished the night 14-for-14.

Tulsa started the game on an 8-2 run after hitting its first two shots, but the Shockers responded with a barrage of three-pointers. Ridgnal hit two after Rogers hit the first to kickstart a 13-2 run.

Ridgnal splashed in his third triple after the first media timeout to put Wichita State on top, 18-10. Ridgnal outscored Tulsa by himself, 11-10, in the first 6:00 minutes of the game.

Back-to-back scores from Beverly gave Wichita State a 10-point lead with 11:50 left in the half, forcing a Tulsa timeout.

Tulsa cut it to six at the 8:58 mark, but six straight for the visitors pushed the margin right back to 12. Wichita State would grab its largest lead of the half with 1:15 left, 43-28, following a Rogers trey and Quincy Ballard dunk.

The Hurricane would score the final four points of the half, sending the Shockers into the locker room with a 43-32 lead. Ridgnal led all scorers with 11, all coming in the first 6:00 minutes of the game.

Wichita State was 19-for-33 (57.6 percent) from the floor in the first 20 minutes and outrebounded Tulsa by 10.

The start of the second half was less than ideal for Wichita State. The Shockers missed their first five field goal attempts and had three turnovers, leading to a Tulsa 7-0 run. Just 3:38 into the half, Paul Mills had to burn a timeout with the home crowd on its feet.

Xavier Bell snapped the drought with a baseline floater but the momentum was still on Tulsa’s side after back-to-back three-pointers tied the game at 45. In the span of 6:25, Wichita State’s 11-point halftime lead disappeared.

Wichita State would grab the lead back and hold it for more than 6:00 minutes. A three-point play from Ronnie DeGray III gave the Shockers a 63-57 lead only to see Tulsa punch back with a 7-0 run to take a 64-63 lead with 4:37 to go.

After another DeGray three-point play and a Tulsa layup saw the score tied at 66 with 3:54 remaining.

A Tulsa three-point play made it 69-66 and DeGray answered with a layup at the 2:24 mark, but Wichita State would not score again. A corner three pushed the Tulsa lead to 73-68, and then six straight free throws put the game out of reach.

Up Next
Wichita State travels to Memphis on Saturday for a nationally-televised matchup on CBS at 12 p.m.